Sunday, 24 March 2013

Training to face Oblivion

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

With Dwark looking into further leads to chase down the "mysterious four", we received a quest from the elf priestess Caladre to recover a soul gem from a nearby underground shrine called "the Temple of Oblivion". The crumbling, claustrophobic tunnels are littered with traps and are home to powerful spirits, zombies, demonic imps and conjurers who are (despite our newly upgraded gear) too dangerous to deal with. Even more annoying is that like the Golden Dragon Ruins, this place has barriers blocked by riddles that can only be solved by exploring each passage for historic slates.

Despite that I managed to get Caanon and Quark past the first barrier and they made it all the way to the second floor by luring each guardian spirit (in each barrier) one by one. The zombies are comparatively the safest to deal with as thier slow gait still makes them easy spear fodder and the majority of the paths are linear.

Still, they've come across a chamber with "light spirits" which are too strong to push past so they returned to town to train up a bit first. Fortunately Caladre isn't in a hurry for that gem, so Quark and Caanon have been hunting the cursed coins back at Aria, as well as more Bullspawn (with the porkul thief Arsenic and elf mage Helga) to gain the strength needed to face the horrors still awaiting them in the temple. Selenka has also finished helping Mighty Dog at Deltis Keep and is now assisting the remainder of the cavalry unit at the Aria entryway, while I've continued culling the numbers of Zule back at the Golden Dragon Ruins. It is worth noting that our masked "friend" Arahawi was also in the Temple sometime before us as he took the soul lantern of a spirit there. Tried questioning him on the matter but he seems content on just giving out free tarot card readings in town while avoiding questions.

If only we could train like Stephen Amell!


As an OOC note: The multiclassing system sounds really interesting here. Quark switched from priest to mage and back (having gained skills/levels between each switch) and it looks like you can bring a number of skills from your previous profession over to your new one. Even better you can "grandfather" skills by bringing skills further down the skill tree back to the original class saving you points from any skills you didn't use higher up but previously needed to unlock. Powerplaying sounds like a key mechanic here, the only draw back is each time you change you require 7 class stones of the relevant class which only drop from monsters in... the Temple of Oblivion. :P

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Deers in a Forest

One of the stranger "experimental" MMO's (if you can call it that) I've checked recently (thanks to Bhagpuss) is The Eternal Forest and man... there is some trippy stuff going on over there. For starters there is only one "wrapped" map of the forest itself (hence it is endless), and everyone is some sort of deer with a humanish face, Hayao Miyazaki style. There is no chat option, only action abilities like bowing, jumping, nodding, laughing etc. none of which are labelled and are just depicted by painted pictogram options. Some actions only appear at certain parts of the forest, like drink at a lake or pray at some statues. You can also experience the forest solo but it's far more interesting with other deer online.

Nice yet creepy at the same time?
My first foray had me appear as a fawn and while experimenting with my bleat noise drew the attention of some big shadowy and masked awesome stag thing. No one is named, instead everyone is identified by unique sigils. I am "Half-moon Tear" or something like that. Sounds cool in portugese though: "Meia Lua Rasgar". Maybe just "Rasgar" for short. Don't quite remember the dark one's sigil, but his coat and mask seemed pretty unique. Very strange communicating through actions only too but it works. I met a few other deer, cast funky spells at each other (most with ridiculous results) and then wandered the forest with my shadow as he showed me the ropes.

Apart from no chatting there is no combat in the forest, no crafting, just interaction and exploration which is... unique? My favourite skill is to "listen" as you can detect the number and direction of other players in the forest (i saw around maybe 10 other sigils), as well as other locations nearby. Anywho after a bit of socializing, exploration, and spell casting (non violent obviously) I decided to log out after my shadow did. It was an interesting first foray into the forest, and strangely - I don't think it will be my last.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Chainmail Bikini Battle!

Just for kicks I've been trying out a few other MMO's lately and have come across two that encapsulate the old motto of "Sex Sells". I'm talking ofcourse of Kabod Online and Scarlet Blade (currently in beta for the english version, also known as Queen's Blade everywhere else) and despite the years of difference between the two they are actually -very- similar. Unfortunately this doesn't make either of them any good. Let's see how they go head to head:

Kabod takes place in a world full of bored monsters who stand around surrounding sparsely populated villages for seemingly no reason. Scarlet Blade takes place on a planet full of bored monsters who stand around more populated bases with better reason: they actually live there and the player(s) are technically the invaders. Where Kabod suffers from horrible translation problems and lazy text editing at least Scarlet Blade has readable and understandable english and gives a bit more incentive to go out there and generally mass murder everything.

Time to put an end to their boredom. (MMO Site has more pics of Kabod)

"Talk to x", "Kill x number of monsters" or "Gather x material from killing monsters" is pretty much the standard fare for both games which is a shame since it boils down to endless grind, the only difference is that in Kabod you have to finish tasks in person while in the future of Scarlet Blade you just use your cellphone (lol). They do both lead to open PvP zones though which I guess appeals to some. This is where having a solid story (Guildwars 2 / Mabinogi / Wizardry Online) really helps give the players the drive to continue playing.

WoW standard fare for both unfortunately (ie. boring). Use highest damage skill followed by next and so on till highest damage cooldown has finished then repeat. Scarlet Blade features a ton more skill sets per class than Kabod though, but Kabod has a better in-built mechanic for the grind called "hunting stones" which drop from slain mobs which gives you a stack of 10 minutes each of legalized botting. You just set the radius to hunt in, put your potions in order and set when to automatically drink them. Then you can go play another MMORPG while you autolevel in this one. :P

While Scarlet Blade has hints of (naughty) picture puzzles and card games (both of which are ironically played through combat anyway), Kabod is purely all about the grind, I mean combat. Sure there are magic cards you can collect but that is just to enchant your gear. This is wierd considering that silly things like fishing, cooking and crafting have been in MMORPGs since Ultima Online.

Kabod's pet system is a bit like pokemon with far less things to catch. Basically you beat up something and make it your slave. Pretty sure at some point you can buy horses too. Not too sure about Scarlet Blade's pet system, only that there is one. There are also motorbikes for your character to mount (suggestively ofcourse) and from my understanding temporary giant robots, because ... why not.

Everything is better with giant robots.

Kabod has all of 3 (repetetive) songs from what I've heard and NPCs greet you with insane giggling or laughter. Your character is the strong silent type though and will go through combat, damage and even death without making so much as a squeek. By comparison Scarlet Blade has ok music and voiced NPCs halfheartedly speaking one generic line (followed by a wall of text) when conversed. Furthermore other than the medic (so far) almost every other class make irritating moans during battle and gets quite annoying. Who yells at a high pitch when firing a sniper rifle anyway? Oh, right. GW2 people. *sigh*

Given that Kabod looks marginally better than the old Knight Online and Scarlet Blade looks almost as good as Guildwars 2 it's not surprising that the newer game is shinier. Character customization in Scarlet Blade is also very much more flexible. Strangely though, as skimpy as the "c-string armor" is in Scarlet Blade your character can never go full monty (pretty close though) where as in Kabod the armor-breaking system pretty much guarantees nudity for your character and most of the monsters (mostly female) too. Not that you would care since you are afk using hunting stones by that stage.

There you have it, I'll let you decide if you want to waste your time on either of these or find something better (though really, what MMO isn't ultimately just a waste of time?). For me, they don't really rank higher than Rappelz, Knight Online or Runescape (for the sheer lol) which are themselves already pretty low on my list but who knows? Maybe for someone else these are the next best thing since sliced bread.

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Aria Reservoir: the Core of Evil

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

Seems there's something happening behind the scenes in this kingdom as Quark's team and I encountered a strange party of "evil doers" in the lower core level of the Aria Reservoir. This floor features larger hallways mainly patrolled by more cursed coins, while the main spacious "dance hall" is patrolled by petryfing shadows who are easily enough avoided if you put your mind to it. It is best divided into three sections:

A Tale of Knights Reception:
The first barrier was not far into the second floor at all, held by a riddle of four knights and a foolish king. While I could defeat each knight individually I needed Quark's help to beat them all together. Once out of the way we were allowed entry to the main area.

The Petrifying Dance Floor:
Taking up the largest area on this level, it is pretty easy to navigate if you stick to the walls to avoid the lurkers. Stairs down on either side lead to either spider or frog infested sewers, both of which we ended up harvesting for reagents with Jaina's help (Quark's thief friend). The frogs were more dangerous - definitely evade their poison tounge attack! Also within their lairs were items that needed to be "mirrored" then given to statues in the dance hall itself to access the next area - defended by Shadow Dancer zombies. Despite their name they still very much lacked dexterity and were easy prey for my spear.

Back Area:
Ran into the masked aristocrat Arahawi here and he's very much as untrustworthy as Sel first said. Still he had a potion of magic negation which we required to access the last barrier, but not only was it protected by dark magic but also by four minotaurs! Fortunately Porkul and I could spear them through the door that they were too fat to fit through. Once within the barrier we encountered the strange party I spoke of earlier composed of a patchwork giant, an elven vampire, a masked fencer and the same sorceress from Deltis Keep, who seemed to be their leader.

Apparently they were giving out Beta-keys!

They didn't deem us worth the trouble of fighting though and instead the vampire let loose his "pets" on us - more bullspawn. After the battle the four had fled to parts unknown and we were left to return to town and report in our findings. On a lighter note Quark has made me an honorary member of his currently 7 strong union called the "Porkul-pickers". From those that I've met I think you'll like them, they seem to be Dragonarm material.


Thursday, 14 March 2013

Entrance to the Aria Reservoir

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

Prime Minister Zermu Terlu gave us another task this week, to eliminate the bullspawn demons that dwell in the deeper parts of the Aria Reservoir. Apparently the place had long ago been sealed up, and only recently been reopened by an entire cavalry unit to help the ministry's survey team do their job. I am upset to report that Mr. Caanon and Thanam both said it was too dangerous for me to go so I remained in Illfalo Port while they went ahead. I wonder if it's because the souls lost sign board now says 75 for last month, whereas the month before it was zero?

Anyway, I decided to help out Mighty Dog back at Dimento Keep - fighting off rival gangs and the wizards that reside in the deeper parts.I was somewhat surprised when Thanam snuck up on me there later (I almost shot him with magic, thinking he was a rogue! Technically I was right). Apparently Mr. Caanon had made it through the first floor of the reservoir with his friend Quark and two other fighters. According to his description it was broken up into three major areas.

Market Entrance
Plagued by giant flies that the remaining cavalry forces keep at bay, the first barrier required a simple ticket bought from a machine at the end of the right hand hall, something Thanam said was easy for him to get. Past the barrier guarded only by a rotting nobleman and some flies, was the empty market which is guarded by cursed coins and by clouds of deadly poison elementals, and is where Quark and his team of fighters: Nyenya (human) and Porkul "Porky" were met.

Dark Horse Circuit
The next barrier was right beside a broken horse statue which the team had to first repair, requiring only a horn (it was a unicorn statue apparently) but also lot of running through dark places and from many creatures. The barrier itself was defended by a large group of knights, probably soldiers from the cavalry unit that had been corrupted be the cursed coins. Fortunately their team was strong enough to defeat them all.

Drain Section
According to Thanam the final part was another long sewer filled mainly with slimes with a final barrier that needed another ticket from a nearby machine. Only this time it cost Kraken Coins (1 for porkuls, 2 for everyone else)! Good thing Mr. Caanon brought spares as some of his allies were short. The guardian itself was a giant slime, nearly as big as the chamber it was in. Mr. Caanon nearly died fighting it, but the team managed to push past it to the second floor.

As dangerous as it is hideous.

Apparently Mr. Caanon then sent Thanam back to check on me! Seriously, I have half a mind to go in there and bop him on the head myself!!! >.<


Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Haunting Chikor Castle

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

With Selenka taking magic classes as the Ministry of Arcanum (she certainly seems to spend lots of time there lately), Caanon got us a job from a scholarly appraiser at the bustling market to track down his friend, a mage who was last seen headed towards Chikor Castle, so named because of a heroic dog that once lived there apparently. Now the castle is home only to the undead, and has three main areas of interest. For a change the traps in this place are easily detected.

Western Dungeon:
Turning left from the entry leads to stairs down into a large zombie infested hall. Fortunately Caanon met up with Quark and Vladut again along with Lydovey, a fair elven mage, to tackle the massive horde while I shadowed from a distance. A safer path to traverse the hall is to take the ladders up to the higher walkways which lead to relative safety. Alas I was too far to warn them about the pit trap at the first dark angel statue (activated by donating items to the ghost of Lord Midnight at the entry).

Caanon reported that they had fallen into a small dungeon surrounded by fast zombies. Having been injured I stayed with him while the rest of the party moved on. Past the gate, and a knight statue was another ghost who Caanon aided and she provided the key to the higher level of the castle.

Forge Level:
Accessible by turning right from the entry hall, this area contained more zombies and a large pack of kobolds. Since it was easier to sneak past, I was the one traversing this area most - mainly to contact the dwarf spirit here who held the key to the final statue which held a chamber with more zombies and a doom sentinel.

Looked a lot like those creeps in the Shalebridge Cradle.

Top Floors:
Past the forge level are stairs up to the quarters themselves which Caanon reported was guarded by an ambush of kobolds in a tight hallway. Many more zombies, butchers and statues lurked in the maze up there and it was here that we found the mage we were looking for. He had been turned into a scavenger zombie... Once we retrieved his remains Caanon focused on going up past the many poison traps until the very top of the castle which is ultimately where we found what the dwarf spirit back at the forge wanted.

After collecting the reward we met up with our absentee mage and went shopping with our now substatial funds (much to Caanon's displeasure)! It was time to get new equipment though, and he wasn't complaining so much once he had his full bronze plate armor on.


Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Trials at the Golden Dragon Ruins

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

Sel was contacted by a masked aristocrat calling himself Arahawi today and we were tasked with retrieving the Fir Elin jewel for him from the Golden Dragon Ruins, an outdoor trap-filled labyrinth of teleporters inhabited by goblin-like gargoyles, troll-like zules, foul smelling ogre things and worst of all large earth elementals that have remarkable range with their fists. Furthermore, both floors are stacked with riddles pertaining to the rather gruesome fate of Lin Lian. The answers are littered within stone tablets in the ruins themselves but most were a pain to remember, let alone get to (good thing we have a sneaky elf). Also Sel remembered a song sung by the bard back in town which helped in some parts.

Most of the barricades were held by denizens of the ruins, and some by groups of stone knight statues. Using the many broken pillars I could fight them a few at a time but one barricade, held by five earth elementals was almost unpassable. Fortunately with enough training they too broke before me and deeper within the mapless zone I met a porkul priest named Quark, Jaina a thief, and Vladut an elven warrior. We decided to team up to reach the end of the place, defeating a powerful purple hued zombie on the way.

Giant Frogs like eating Porkuls.

Due to the arrival of another murderous mage (pk) called Smackman our group was broken not long after and I had to proceed to the final section with Vladut. Fortunately the giant frog that was guarding the jewel itself was not so dangerous, despite being very tough. After it fell to our blades we returned to Illfalo Port and Sel gave Arahawi what he wanted, completing the contract. On a side note I am getting concerned for her. Something is wrong with the mana in this region, despite the supposed mana drain, as evidenced by the blood thirsty mages we've seen. Will keep an eye on her and will get Thanam to do the same.


Monday, 11 March 2013

Wizards of Deltis Keep

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

We were summoned to the Ministry of Arcanum today by Prime Minister Zermu Terlu, a large dwarf with an equally large beard. Apparently they had been sending survey teams out, finding that some of the waterways in the nearby ruins are connected to "Dragoon Ruins", which may have a link to the mana drain being experienced in this land. To this end he has sent us to Deltis Keep to locate and assist the survey team trapped within. The keep itself is best described in three wings.

West Wing: Firecracker's Entrance
Home to more beetles and firecracker bandits and fighters, these people are rarely found alone making them challenging to deal with. "Mighty Dog", a porkul thief that Thanam befriended near the entrance actually tasked us to find their stash of salt for him. Eventually we did, using a key from one of their warriors to unlock the store room. Inside were horribly strong zombies but Mr. Caanon's long spear kept them at bay. Also in this area is a large executioner called Death Carrier who is a very tough fight if you are not fast with your evades. Last but not least, nearby is a "walker" (reaper) who I could detect with my magic. It's definitely a scary place!

SouthEast Wing: King Plumper's Territory
Protected by a barrier from two blue feather wizards (and their body guards), the area beyond isn't so bad. Mostly beetles and possibly a wallet frog, unless you go looking for trouble (which we did) and located another wizard and a purple air elemental who we just left alone. The main inhabitants here are the Junk Metals Highwaymen and their leader King Plumper, with whom Mighty Dog wants to initiate trade with. While Mr. Plumper is quite personable his men are not and will still attack on sight!

North Wing: Execution Chamber
The most dangerous place in the keep is right after a passage with many beetles. It is a large hall with roaming wizards, guards and another Death Carrier. Worse still is that there are at least two reapers present here. Thanam managed to find a route past and located the survey team in the following room and they needed someone to defeat "Scapegoat" who was blocking their research. Caanon dealt with him and his zombies but reported seeing a strange sorceress appear right after. He claims she took the soul of his fallen enemy before vanishing again.

Something like this!

Once the path was cleared the survey team activated a nearby beacon so that we could escape back to town, which we did in a hurry. We weren't yet out of danger though because once we returned there was a mad elven wizard named Solfus (pk) waiting at the gates attacking everyone. I and a few locals helped the guards fight him off before he vanished into the back streets. With the evil spreading even to here I can only hope Mighty Dog is ok back in that keep.


Sunday, 10 March 2013

Defeating the Creator

My journal through Borderlands! You can follow the rest of the story here!

As expected the lumber yard was quite well defended and I found the empty van of the scooby gang right at the entrance. Not a good sign. Sure enough as I progressed I found each a journal for each member - their last before getting their brains munched out (or squished by a barrel). Some of the zombies were getting really tough too, with one badass tankenstien forcing me to backtrack a little into the chasing horde before being able to take him down. Fortunately I was getting very adept at evading zombie puke by this stage.

They puke a lot. :(

Eventually I bust into the mill itself where I cleaned up the last few brain eaters in the way before confronting Dr. Ned in person about his zombie making ways. He had turned the main floor into a surgery of sorts, and was not willing to stop his operation so we settled things via an old fashioned gun fight. Ofcourse he lost, but no sooner had I "killed" him that he revived into a giant laughing monstrous thing that burrowed into a cavern underneath the mill itself.

 I dropped down in pursuit and found it waiting for me in a sea of blood.  Fortunately he was not very agile and certainly not as tough as the tentacle beast from the vault, so after a few short minutes I exploded him into little disgusting giblets. With my task complete I returned to Jakob's Cove to report in then took a transport back to New Haven to clean up all this zombie puke and zombie pieces from my clothes. Eww.

A few days later while idling in town I received an invitation from someone named Moxxi. She heard I was a decent fighter and was wondering if I wanted to participate in her arena. I managed to beat everything the zone has thrown at me so far I thought to myself. Why not?

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Familiar Ground

My journal through Borderlands! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Taking an elevator to the surface the area looked instantly familiar - I was in Old Haven. Seems the Crimson Lance here were overrun by the undead and had now joined their numbers. Fortunately they didn't use their guns anymore! I eventually found my way to Dr. Ned's secret underground lab where I found a lot of proof that he was intentionally responsible for the zombie outbreak. With proof in hand I headed towards one of the Lance comm stations, making a slight detour when Dr. Ned's dead assistant, Bill, burst out of the ground to attack me. He was a huge green, angry man and it took quite a LOT of bullets to put him down.

He was -very- angry.

Upon arrival at the comm station I used their 56k relay to inform the Jakob's Corporation about Dr. Ned and to send help. They were impressed by my drive and hired me on to continue the investigation and were also sending a transport to get me out of there. Activating the landing beacon also drew out a lot of zombies unfortunately so I had to hole up in one of Marcus' old shops until the extraction vessel arrived, at which point I made a bolt for it - guns blazing for a quick escape.

Back at Jakob's Cove, a representative of Jakob's corp was there to give me another task: To meet up with another bunch of mercs called "the scooby gang" and then go hunt down Dr. Ned himself at the nearby lumber mill. I was also provided with an electronic key to get past some of the locked areas in that region. After some equipment repairs and restocking of ammo I headed out the town gates to put an end to this madness once and for all. Though, not sure how killing Dr. Ned would alleviate the zombie problem. :/

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Deadly Streets: Kaoka Parrej Ruins

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

With Selenka still practicing her magic at the Caligrase Sewers, Caanon and I headed on to check out the Kaoka Parrej Ruins located atop a sunny hill. The good visibility helps in avoiding the many fire and arrow traps that litter this place too. Far less people here that at the sewers, and not all of them good. This area is best divided by its roads.

Main Street:
The main road has slow moving plants and even more beetles, all of whom are very slow but could catch you if you spend too long talking to the pair of friendly ghosts near the entrance (yes I'm talking about Caanon). Further in are ugly giant flies who are still outrunnable, but to get an item from a nearby carnivorous plant we had to ally with a porkul magician who was hunting them. Once we had enough fly bits, the plant puked out an orb. I let Caanon pick it up since he made me sleep in the stable yesterday.

High Street:
Blocked by an oversized dragonfly and two of its friends, the high street is not that dangerous for the cautious and the quick. One part led to a plaza with a friendly kobold who wanted a toy and the other was an alleyway with more beetles and plants with a chest. There -was- a giant spider that showed up when I unlocked the box though. Ran like hell back to high ground where it did not pursue thankfully.

Also below the plaza was a spellbound/cursed warrior who when we visited was being defeated by the mage aicu. After helping her jump back to the main road proper we setup camp and chatted a little before an evil female knight with a spear (pk) appeared and killed the poor girl. Caanon led the enemy all the way back through the traps to the entrance before luckily escaping.

Rough sketch of the villain?

Low Street:
Right at the tail end of the Main Street, this one is blocked by a group of Visitor Plants. They may be stronger but they're still slow. The true danger is that low street is full of kobolds, ones not afraid of giving chase. In numbers they can easily overwhelm the unprepared.

Side Street:
The last path, only openable after completing the high and low streets, ended with a Kobold Chieftain and his cohorts. Caanon managed to deal with them easily, finding behind them a strange black orb and a beacon to return to Illfalo Port.

Managed to get a lot of coin for some of the artifacts we returned with this time. I think getting a bed at the inn shouldn't be a problem any more.


Wednesday, 6 March 2013

The Best Cure is Bullets

My journal through Borderlands! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Finally reached Dr. Ned's house and after waiting for a hand cranked lift (while fighting off more zombies) I managed to speak to him upclose. Pretty sure he was Dr. Zed with a fake mustache. Regardless he said he was working on a skag-based cure at the local hospital which might be helpful against this outbreak and sent me to get it. On the way I managed to collect a bunch of corpse eater eggs for a different contract then found myself at the Generally Hospital, which happened to be on a hill surrounded by a cemetery. Great.

Nothing can go wrong.

Burned my way up the hill only to be contronted by a hat-wearing were-skag who wasn't that hard to defeat, then collected the not very effective antidote sample (since it turned people into wereskags). While in the area I also came across evidence of another hunter, a priest, who was looking to purge the evil here by himself but instead wound up bitten. Sure enough he too was a were-skag and had made a small pack for himself near the shore. Fighting them was a little troublesome since they would grow larger near death and regenerate to full, but with quick feet I was still able to turn all of them to ash before they could spread their disease any further.

Also on the shore I encountered more flocks of corpse eaters and skelerakks (starved rakks) which I eliminated before returning to Jakob's Cove. Back in town the local Claptrap had been hacked (by Marcus) informing me that Dr. Ned is not who he says he is (the mustache didn't give it away or anything) and that he has a secret lab nearby. I go to check it out and it is a little boat... with coordinates. I punched the go button and soon found myself pulling into an underground facility. Dead Crimson Lance bodies nearby did not bode well.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Impaired Living

My journal through Borderlands! You can follow the rest of the story here!

As I sat at a bar eating some chow in New Haven I mindlessly spun the vault key around on the table. Dr. Tannis was interested in the artifact but I wasn't so keen on handing it over what with our past and all. As I sat there Marcus came by and asked me to check up on Dr. Zed who had gone missing from the town. Apparently the only lead was to a place called Jakob's Cove. Having nothing better to do I took the job and took a small outrigger to the island. Upon docking I felt something was very wrong. The local PA and Claptrap confirmed this stating the isle was now overrun by the living-impaired, and it wasn't long before I ran into them. Zombies, slightly different from the ones I faced in the old country - most were pretty agile.

Fortunately my upgraded autorifle now fired burning bullets and if there's one thing these corpses didn't like it was fire. After cleaning out the town and securing it by activating the emplaced auto turrets I was advised to find the local doctor, Dr. Ned "who is totally not Dr. Zed" at his local clinic. Alas all I found was a note that he was going to hide out in his house in the bayou so there was not much else I could do but trudge after him into the murky swamp.

Came across another town deeper in called Hallow's End where to my surprise I also found TK Baha - alive... well sort of. The poor bastard had been zombified and kept muttering about brains. I put my rifle to his face and killed him permanently this time. Nearby I also encountered a large creature called Pumpkin Head (probably because of his headgear) - he was resistant to fire so I had to switch to the explosive round sniper rifle to penetrate that mask of his and eventually the freak went down. With an endless stream of zombies pouring in from the swamp I pushed on towards the House of Dr. Ned.

His weak spot is his head! :P

Monday, 4 March 2013

Bounty Hunting in the Caligrase Sewers

Part of the journals from Wizardry Online! You can view the rest here!

Received our first task from Dwark the dwarf, guild master in Illfalo Port to hunt down the Black Rose bandits in Caligrase Sewers. There were many other adventurers there upon our arrival, mostly new recruits like ourselves from the looks of it. The area is more or less in four parts, accessible in order.

Zone 1: Entryway
Slow moving zombies and large beetles predominantly lurk here, all of whom are easily avoided. After pressing four buttons the hall opened up allowing further exploration after defeating 5 slow but poisonous zombies.

Zone 2: Dark Halls
Highwaymen and bandits patrol the deeper halls, but again they follow predictable paths and are easy to bypass. Access to the next hall was blocked by a large bug catching chamber. Had to clean it out before being able to progress. Should note Thanam got himself trapped in one of the dark rooms here with a bunch of zombies. Fortunately his traps and knife sorted them out, which seemed to unlock the exit door.

Zone 3: Bridge over Drains
With stronger zombies lurking below and traps on the bridge this was a bit tougher. The high road was ultimately easier to navigate, but I needed to backtrack to search the lower drains for pieces of a lever in the muck. Giant frogs and what looked like a werewolf also lurked down here. Did not want to tangle with that for sure.

Zone 4: End of Circuit
After the bridge was a small kobold camp. Fast moving critters but again easily outrun. Entrance to the Black Rose lair was not far past this but their four man band put up a good fight when all together. Was forced to fight them separately, especially Black Rose herself (?). She looked very much like a man. There was also a beacon to return to town nearby and a path back to the Entryway.

She was quite scary indeed.

With that task complete we returned to town to report in. Not a very profitable run however. I think the elf will have to sleep in the stables tonight.


Sunday, 3 March 2013

Intentional Miscommunications

My journal through Borderlands! You can follow the rest of the story here!

It felt wierd going through the Crimson Lance base with my autopistol, but I was getting the hang of their tactics given the number of soldiers that kept getting in my way. I found Dr. Tannis locked up in one of the cells and she apologized for tricking me, saying she had no choice. Fair enough, given that the Lance are actually her employers. Anyway Commandant Steele has taken the key and is off to the vault but I first have to re-establish the comm array they shut down.

This isn't that hard to do since those guardian ghost things seem to also be attacking the outer base, freeing me up to get to each comm tower. Once that's done I free Tannis and she tells me where the vault is. The strange vision of that woman appears again telling me to hurry, to reach it before Steele can open it so I make a beeline straight for the marker, fighting past a small contigent of Lance troops before reaching a long descending cave. More guardian things are in here but I've brought my "lightning" SMG to deal with their tough shields. Marcus is a genious when it comes to weaponizing artifacts from the zone.

As I went deeper battles between Lance and guardian forces became plentiful, but the voice compelled me to be quick so I sprinted past them into some snowy ruins where again I only put down the foes that needed putting down. Eventually I finally reached the vault arch where Commandant Steele was waiting for me. I was too late, the vault was opening... and its untold riches were - a lie! Instead a monstrous tentacle beast emerged killing Steele and her remaining troops leaving me to fight the creature on my own.


After an obscene amount of bullets the creature finally died and the vision of the mysterious woman thanked me for my services. Damn it, this whole time she was just a powerful controller. I pocketed the now useless vault key and took my reward of empty ammo clips and numerous cuts and bruises back to New Haven via a Crimson Lance controlled teleporter anomaly.

Friday, 1 March 2013

There can be only One

My journal through Borderlands! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Baron Flynt detected my arrival at the Salt Flats early and egged me on to come face him. I guess he was a little pissed I've been killing his dudes. Not wanting to disappoint I drove right up to his base, a huge abandoned mining machine, killed his vehicle patrols and base guards then went up to kill his bodyguards and finally him too. Even his rocket revolver couldn't stand up to me. However it was then that I learned I had been betrayed - the self appointed Baron didn't have any artifacts at all!

Commandant Steele or the Crimson Lance radioed in to clear up any confusion, stating Dr. Tannis was working for her. Marcus was wondering who had been supplying the good doctor since it wasn't him. Anyway Steele hoped that Flynt and I would eliminate each other but seeing that I'm alive, she just warned me to stay away before shutting down the communications of the entire region. Obviously that wasn't going to happen. I had planted a bug on Tannis the first time I met her, only an idiot would "give" away artifacts freely.

The blips led me to a heavily fortified Lance outpost. Fortunately there was a convenient "back door" cave nearby which I opted to use instead of the frontal attack. The cave was crawling with spiderants but they weren't that troublesome for my autorifle. I had to switch to my autopistol when I neared the Lance facility though since Master McCloud and two of his buddies attempted to stop me. The trio put up a good fight, but in the end I was the last one standing (and not a melted pile of goo on the floor).

I should have gotten a Quickening!